West Coast NBA Betting Preview: Portland Trail Blazers at L.A. Clippers
Betting odds courtesy of Bovada
The Portland Trail Blazers hold a one-game lead over its opponent tonight, and NBA oddsmakers are favoring the home team Clippers by 9.5 points over Damian Lilllard and the Blazers.
Portland is 36-16 on the season but has lost three of its past five contests and the Blazers fell to Oklahoma City 98-95 last night (Feb 11). All Blazers starters scored in double-figures in the contest, led by Nicolas Batum’s 18 points. C.J. McCollum came in and played 27 minutes off the bench, hitting 5-of-12 from the floor for 15 points, while also dishing out three assists.
The Blazers have high hopes for McCollum, their selection from the 2013 NBA draft. Like Lillard, McCollum attended a mid-major school, Lehigh, and he’s best known for carving up Duke to upset the No. 2 seed in the 2011 NCAA tournament. The Blazers are noted for having an especially weak bench, so to get production from McCollum would shore up a weakness. LaMarcus Aldridge had an especially poor shooting game against the Thunder, hitting just 5-of-22 from the floor, and the Blazers still nearly won the game, so there is a silver lining in that loss.
The Blazers are 17-10 on the road this season and the L.A. Clippers have the third-best home record in the league at 22-4. The Clippers will try to push the pace to take advantage of the Blazers’ tired legs in this one. LAC is 2nd in the NBA in scoring (106.7 points per game), and has Chris Paul back in the fold to work his magic.
Paul won’t start in the All-Star game this year, but he’s having a sensational season in the 35 games he has played in, posting averages of 19.2 points and 11.1 assists per game. Paul has helped Blake Griffin immensely, and Griffin will start in the A.S. event. Griffin is averaging 23.9 points, 9.8 rebounds and a career high 3.6 assists per game. He’s shed a lot of the criticism regarding his offensive game, showing more moves and better footwork than seen in season’s past.
The Clippers round out the nucleus of Paul and Griffin with sharp shooting guards Jamal Crawford and J.J. Redick. Crawford is a past Sixth Man of the Year winner and is averaging 18.4 points per game while Redick is posting 15.7 points and 2.2 assists per game. DeAndre Jordan has embraced his role of being a rebounder and defender and is leading the league in boards this year with 14.1 per game. Jordan also averages one steal and 2.37 blocks per game, in making his presence felt at the defensive end. The result has been a Clippers team that ranks in the top-10 of league defense, and all it cost the team was a first round draft pick (traded for Doc Rivers to become coach).
POR Trends: UNDER 7-1-1 in lat 9 following ATS loss; 1-6 ATS in last 7 when opponent scores 100 points or more in previous game; 4-1 ATS in last 5 Wednesday games.
LAC Trends: OVER 6-0 in last 6 vs teams with road winning percentages over .600; 0-4 ATS in last 4 vs teams with winning percentages above .600; 0-5 ATS in last 5 Wednesday games.
Head-to-head: UNDER 5-1 in last 6 meetings in Los Angeles; Portland 1-4 ATS in last 5 meetings; Portland 2-5 ATS in last 7 meetings in Los Angeles.